By DAVE BORODY
PLYMOUTH, Michigan – Wow! What a difference a week makes. The Sarnia Sting capped their best week of the season with a hard-fought 4-2 victory over the Plymouth Whalers, Saturday night in front of 3,823 fans at the Compuware Sports Arena.
Sarnia won three games in as many nights after going 0-3 the previous week.
“We are playing the right way this week,” said defenceman Anthony DeAngelo, who scored the winning goal in the third period. “We have been doing the right things. We are making the safe plays while we seemed to get some bounces this week that we didn’t get a week ago.”
He added, “We keep plugging away like we did over these last three games and good things will happen.”
Sarnia trailed 2-1 after two periods before scoring three unanswered goals in the final period to record their first three-game winning streak of the season.
“I’m really happy,” said Sting head coach Trevor Letowski. “This wasn’t our best game of the weekend, but we found a way to win and that’s something we didn’t do earlier in the season.
“Even though Plymouth is a young team and were missing some guys tonight, they always play us tough in this building. With a big crowd in here, it was loud and wasn’t easy. We were able to manufacture a couple of goals in the third period.”
Letowski added, “Brodie Barrick was solid in goal for us. He kept us in there. It was a quality start for him and he held the fort and gave us a chance to win.”
The Sting opened the scoring midway through the first period when Nikolay Goldobin took a drop pass from Nick Latta and snapped a wrist shot past the Whalers goalie. Bryan Moore also assisted on Goldobin’s 14th goal of the season and fourth in three games.
The score stayed that way until the 10:50 mark of period two when Plymouth tied the game as Connor Sills banged home a loose puck after a scramble around the Sting goal.
Just 30 seconds later the Whalers took a 2-1 lead on a wraparound goal by Zach Lorentz. Barrick kept his team down only one when he stopped a breakaway with a minute to go in the period.
That save would be huge as just a minute into period three Davis Brown tied the game for Sarnia when he broke through the Whalers defence and fired the puck into the top corner of the net for his third of the season.
“Anybody who has watched our team knows Davis has been snake-bit when it comes to scoring goals,” said Letowski. “Overall he’s been one of our best forwards even though the numbers might now show it. That was a huge goal tonight.”
The Sting jumped ahead 3-2 at 6:55 with their first shorthanded goal of the season. DeAngelo made one of his patented rink-long dashes and what appeared to be an innocent-looking backhand somehow got between the legs of the Whalers goalie. Moore and Tyler Hore picked up assists on DeAngelo’s eighth goal of the year.
DeAngelo, who leads all Ontario Hockey League defenceman in scoring with 32 points, described the goal.
“There was a turnover in our zone and I had a chance to skate with the puck. I saw their defenceman backing up so I went to the net and took a backhand on the net. I saw the puck just get over the goal line.”
Plymouth pulled their goalie with 1:43 remaining and had a couple of chances before Nick Latta iced the game with 36.1 seconds remaining scoring into an open net from outside the blueline.
Latta’s 17th goal equalled his output for all of last season.
Plymouth held a 37-28 edge in shots on goal. Sarnia was zero-for-five on the power play and Plymouth zero-for-three.
Sarnia improved to 8-14-0-1 on the season 3-7-0-0 on the road.
The Sting will remain on the road next weekend for a pair of games. They play Friday night in Sault Ste. Marie and take on the Saginaw Spirit Saturday night.
Sarnia’s next home game is Nov. 29th when they host Saginaw at 7:05 p.m. at the RBC Centre.
Tickets for all remaining home games for the Sting are on sale daily at the RBC Box Office, by calling 519-541-1717 or going online at Sarniasting.com
DeAngelo was first star with Sills second star and Moore third star.
Not dressed for the Sting were Josh Chapman and Matt Ciccarelli, (both injured), along with rookie Noah Bushnell. He was given a three-game suspension by the league on Saturday after picking up a checking-from-behind major in Friday night’s game with Saginaw.
The Phoenix Coyotes called up ex-Sting Connor Murphy Saturday night for their National Hockey League game against the Tampa Bay Lightning. Murphy is a former first round draft pick of the Coyotes. Murphy scored his first NHL goal in the game.
Ex-Sting Jordan Addesi has now played six games with the Whalers. He has no points and is minus-one. He was used sparingly in last night’s game.
Goldobin will play a pair of games in the upcoming Subway Super Series later this month. He will play for Team Russia against the OHL all-stars for games in Oshawa and Sudbury.